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Should I get the Swine Flu Vaccination During Pregnancy?

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  • Written By: Patti Kate
  • Edited By: W. Everett
  • Last Modified Date: 03 November 2016
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Women who are pregnant may be at an increased risk for contracting infectious diseases. Many experts agree it is sensible to receive a swine flu vaccination during pregnancy. Swine flu, also known as the H1N1 virus, is highly contagious and may pose serious health complications in high-risk individuals. It is generally believed the benefits of being vaccinated outweigh the minimal risks of complications. You should discuss these risks with your physician, as he can advise you best.

If you are not suffering from an infection or fever, and you have no allergies to chicken eggs, your doctor will most likely advise you to receive the swine flu vaccination, even if you are pregnant. The vaccine is cultivated with eggs, so women with that allergy should be cautious. Medical experts also believe there is heightened risk of miscarriage if a woman contracts swine flu during pregnancy. This is because H1N1 is considered to be more dangerous than seasonal influenza.

Receiving the swine flu vaccination during pregnancy will not guarantee that you won't contract the illness. It could, however, lessen the severity for you and your unborn baby if you contract swine flu. During your pregnancy, your immune system may not be as strong as it normally is. You're also less likely to be able to fight off infection without complications, should you become ill.

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Many misconceptions surround swine flu and vaccinations for the virus. It is not possible to contract swine flu from the swine flu vaccination during pregnancy or any other time. The vaccination, which is done through injection, does not contain an active or live virus, making it impossible to contract H1N1 from the vaccine.

Government health officials state that the swine flu vaccination during pregnancy is perfectly safe. It is recommended you receive your swine flu vaccination as soon as it becomes available prior to the flu season. Although it was once necessary to have a seasonal flu shot in addition to the H1N1 vaccination, protection is now being combined into one shot. This will ensure maximum protection against most strains of influenza.

If you receive your influenza shot during pregnancy, antibodies will develop within your body to protect you and the developing fetus. Experts also believe there is a chance of added protection for your baby even after birth. It is recommended that you avoid the nasal spray vaccine during pregnancy, however, as this form does contain small amounts of weakened live virus.

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